tv Washington Journal Delegate Stacey Plaskett Discusses the Russia... CSPAN June 7, 2017 8:31am-9:06am EDT
-- world of criminal networks including terrorists, but also that world ofrs, business, and the world of nongovernmental organizations. i think of all of those actors as web actors an increasingly important actors. we don't have strategies for how to bring them together. >> watch afterwards sunday night at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span2's booktv.
>> "washington journal" continues. host: our second guest of the morning, delegate stacey plaskett, member of the government oversight reform committee, talking about jim comey later this week, thank you for joining us. this was an announcement morning by the president saying he intends to nominate christopher ray as the next rector of the fbi. is there any insight you can offer into what he brings into the bureau? he was the chief of staff i worked for larry thompson as a deputy and then james comey when he and christer became head of the criminal investigation at that time. chris has got to be one of the most outstanding attorneys of the generation. a very methodical and thoughtful guy, let's to stay in the background as most chief of
staff's -- chiefs of staff are. will find a measured and strong-minded individual who has a great deal of respect for those who practice criminal law at the prosecutor vittorio , particularlyl the fbi, the assistant attorney general for the criminal division, so much contact with think everyone has the highest regard for him. it is a great nomination. host: they will go under such , particularly with the relations you will have with the president of the united states p or what do you think he offers in terms of that? guest: i think chris offers a steady hand, which will be important at the fbi during this time. he is an independent-minded person who will let the senate no that he is of course a
conservative who worth in political positions. i have been through this before, and i wide open, god bless you for taking this position. i look forward to hearing what he has to say. host: a person that might resist influence from the white house? i could not see him being someone, who would of course listen politely but he has the course of action that he will follow. we know chris is not going to be the person in the russian investigation. that of course is director mueller. he was the fbi director while chris was in his dad's office and then the criminal division. so they have a good working relationship. host: we will continue on in the
investigation. if you want to ask our guest questions, -- it is jim comey who is in the seat on thursday. the investigation into the former national security adviser, what do you think of all that? comey i think that james is going to understand he has free reign to talk in any manner that he wishes to. to find out what the senate will be asking him, the line of questioning that republicans and democrats will be taking. the purpose of the hearing is to allay american concerns about the president's influence,
whether he did or did not attempt to influence the investigation, and what james comey new or did not know. the questions will arrange -- range from did the weapons try to impede the election, are they involved, to the president's involvement, and members of his staff as well. there will be a range of questions are people will ask about these infamous memos and the memorandum that most investigators right after an interview. it will be interesting to see what comey does or does not say. was it obstruction as far as the conversation relating these memos, from what you have heard, is there evidence to exclude obstruction? obstruction of justice is a high standard and there is a high standard to be met from a legal point of view. you listen to there was a briefing done some time ago in
the house by the deputy ag discussing with us why he wrote the memorandum that comey should be fired, he repeatedly, to the members of the house used the ard that this would be criminal investigation, a criminal investigation. a much higher standard than the senate would have in its own investigation, or independent commission would have. the standard would be a really high one. whether it appears to be obstruction or skirted the edges of it, it is something that is different than if it actually happened. i think we need to be clear about that. is that enough to be concerned about the administration? uncommon to put together a memo particularly of this action? guest: most really good attorneys try to write
contemporaneous memorandums after having significant interactions with someone related to a matter that they are working on. this is not an unusual thing. james comey is a very buy the book kind of person if nothing else. he makes sure his keys are cost -- crossed and eyes are dotted and this would fit right along with that. the nominated person in the position but the person under scrutiny, jim comey, joining us. if you want to ask questions -- we will start with john in oklahoma. the phone with our guest, go ahead. caller: the fbi interviewed hillary clinton, i wonder why
they did not swear her in. are we ready to go now? host: you are on the air right now but what do you particularly think about jim comey being investigated? the question i think they should ask him is why he didn't put hillary under oath during the so-called interview, which he generally calls and interrogation. this is one question that i think should be asked that has not been asked. plus, do you really believe mr. mccain, whose wife received several hundred thousand dollars from the democratic governor of virginia to run for the state senate seat, do you believe he should be investigating hillary clinton? host: you can respond if you wish. www.c-span.org -- guest: there has been a continuing investigation with regard to secretary clinton. it is not usual for the fbi to
put them under oath. that usually occurs during a deposition or when they are on the stand. theyly what happens is just sign something if at that level that backs the statement. having this, i think an oath is not something normally done -- i think all of this will be important to heal -- to hear. theut this out there that special investigator gets to go ahead and do his work. the senate intelligence as well as the house intelligence and oversight committee does there's so congress can kick the act to the work of doing the legislation and answering questions of doing the work that the people of the united states put us therefore.
i hope that much of that work can begin again. host: democrats line p or we will hear from angela. my question is as far as the leak for the contact with the russians during the elections, with reality being prosecuted when she basically revealed something that the american public needed to know that could have been buried or gone through proper channels. host: the fbi -- guest: the fbi and others had arrested a woman who was a
contractor. this would appear -- not allowed to give out classified information. despite the need to know in the the law woulde, not allow her to be the person to get that out to the american people. i think what we need to remember is congress is a balance to the executive branch. it is the one that has the ability to go behind the doors in private setting and , speak to setting lawn performance -- law enforcement and intelligence , to know about this in a very specific manner. what we need to insist upon is when members of congress stand
on these committees, they don't put party over the people, they don't allow their own politics and the politics of their particular party to trump the best interests of the american people. that is something that you as a listener and other americans will have to ensure that you hold us in congress accountable for. presswe heard from the that jim comey told him numerous times that he was not under investigation. is that something jim comey would offer? guest: no but i cannot sit in the room and i am not even sure what the context was of that. he asked to is that conversation ?ain under investigation we do not know the full context of it. behink that will definitely the conversation. i am sure so many members will be able to question him in the
beginning. it is always interesting to me in on oversight government reform because i can gauge what is happening. i can hear what happens -- other questions when it gets -- until gets around to you. you may see the changes in questioning based on earlier and the opening statement. james comey will give an opening statement to the committee and that will change quite aquestiof the questioning at the time. he may answer those questions immediately in his opening statement so he does not have to respond to questions. host: next up. caller: good morning. on behalf of comey, when i look at him, he seems nice. he will tell the truth. so mean to people watching.
i would be listening and i know everyone else will. i know he is there to tell the truth. he is a man of integrity. he is someone who will put it out there, not intimidated by trump, and he will tell the truth. guest: we will see what mr. comey has to say when individuals come before congress to testify. the members who are there, the senators to question him, and the veracity of what he is saying. in terms of what you said about intimidated, one thing we need to remember is when he was deputy attorney general, there was an instance against went completely the bush white house and that was with regard to the memos and was willing to stand in the way
of the white house counsel to ensure the memos were not and even went so far as to prepare the resignation so he was not working under a policy that he felt was unconstitutional or improper. this is what he believes is position, hes own has demonstrated that repeatedly in his career. it is interesting to see how this pans out. host: editors of the wall street journal talk about this saying .isclose them is that a legal option for him? we don't know. these memos are now part of the investigation. director, they're probably within a file. i am sure what he will have to do is get permission from
special investigator mueller to be able to give those out at this point. because he wasen having conversations and they thought these were pertinent and relevant to the investigation. he can talk about what was said within those memorandums but can they actually produce those and give those to the senate and hold them up? i am not sure he will be allowed to do that. host: do you think that supersedes what is going on in the house and the senate? guest: i think the special counsel, mueller will be able to look at this as a criminal matter. of thed that some democrats have been using, i have never used the word impeachment, it is something only congress can do. he can make recommendations to congress but cannot himself do that. there are clear demarcations of what is within the
scope of mueller and what is in the scope of congress. we have three branches of government for a reason. they will work in tandem with each other. host: our guests served as the deputy counsel and the prosecutor staff. 'sm comey, and stacey plaskett joining us for this conversation. california, republican line, john, good morning, go ahead. caller: good morning. guest: hardy -- how are you? caller: thank you. james comey would have had to report back to the bureau right after, is that correct? guest: not necessarily. he has to collect the evidence for it. it is something we would have to , why he would not do it
at the time, were there reasons we were unaware of that made him believe he should not have. if maybe he did not have the evidence, if he was collecting evidence, that could all be reasons why he put those charges up, or he may have been waiting to create an entire package of and one of the things prosecutors always say, the department of justice will indict no case before it's time. these things take quite a bit of time to make sure everything is double checked and triple checked to make sure you have in fact the sound case. at the end of the day, prosecutors just are not to put someone in jail. the jobs should be to find the truth. in finding the truth, if crimes were committed, to indict those crimes.
parsing out the things which are subjective, which are conjecture, which do not meet the standard -- meet the standard of beyond a reasonable doubt here that is something james comey was probably working on. host: independent line. a comment.ad using the term hacking the election is really misleading. the russians did not hack the election. the russians got into a system that was insecure and released emails. guest: i have never used the term hacked the election. used the term that the russians have tried to influence the american process. we have seen the russians have done this throughout the world, are very involved in cyber espionage, and that is something they continue to do. us. is a threat against
if they were to launch missiles against us or do things physically, we would be appalled. areayberspace is another in which we were trying to enact the espionage. we need to be assured that we have tools necessary to impede that and make sure it does not happen. i think it would be inappropriate to say they in fact have to the election or frost to make a general blanket statement that they influenced the election. they attempted to do that. they attempted to change the democracy and put a fake news. everyone is aware of this. it is not something that is conjecture on the part of law enforcement or intelligence. of this is aware throughout the world. that is what we should call it. i agree with you, i would not use that term. term that isctive
blowing things out of proportion. host: andy, republican line. caller: how are you? guest: good morning. how are you? i want to say a very important issue, donald trump has faced problems in the 100 days in office. facing foreign problems, he unfortunately faces other problems. [indiscernible] who have killed a lot of people in syria and iraq and yemen. unfortunately, through these problems. trump, in the 100 days, having more problems in the united states.
foreign policy, trade, climate , i think trumpn messed it up going abroad, , andd a lot of people tomorrow is the fbi testimony. it is a very important issue. having to deal with saudi arabia, unfortunately. thank you, goodbye. i think what he is saying is the job of the presidency, the president of the united states, being the president of the most powerful and important country in the world, you have domestic as well as international issues. you have to set foreign policy. many countries have a great alliance with us for many generations and will continue to do that and rely on this stuff just as we rely on them for military strength as well as
diplomatic strength in those areas. we need to continue to work on that. again, he has to work on the domestic issues that are important to people who put him in office, just as i do. as i was saying earlier, keying in on congress getting back to work on things that make it important. we have a 30% child poverty rate, unemployment in the teens. we have not seen the procession leaves the territory. i'm working on those things that are important as well as balancing the issue. we have to take care of issues of comey and others to make sure that our democracy is sound and that we can then ensure the american people that we are safe, law-abiding companies, while balancing each one of those people to put them in the office. the people in the future and our children.
that is something all members of congress are keen on and that we are working hard on. host: one issue you have worked on his medicaid and medicare. presently in virgin islands, puerto rico, all of the territories, set by congress and arbitrary amount of money that we are to receive from medicare and medicaid. not in the same formula as the rest of the state. large amounts of individuals who would qualify in any other state to receive public assistance for medicaid, for health care. most of these are for children and the elderly receiving this. in the virgin islands and puerto rico and other areas with other territories, they don't set that. all of the states get additional funding for hospitals that have a disproportionate share. the virgin islands and smaller territories don't as well.
that is one of the reasons the territories have this astronomical budget and fiscal issues, the fiscal crisis they have. sick, and in is desperate need of care, you will take them to the hospital whether you can pay for it or not. puerto rico and other places have never been given the tools with the right amount of money and infrastructure in health care, and education, to be able to take care of the needs of the people. they amassed a credit card bill that is way beyond what they are able to pay back. no place isy, supposed to be a territory for over 100 years. virgin islands, puerto rico, and others, we remain territories for much longer than we should have. congress has continued to treat us as benign neglect. congress has the responsibility and have not really done the
fair and right thing by the territories. guamu have places like which have a military presence meeting thepitals needs of the people. in the socialbs safety net, that is there as well. most of these states receive about 30% of funds and come from federal reports. education, health care, territories receive about 14% of the general fund, they come from the federal government. it continues to put them behind. is the birthseeing of something that was building for a long time. leader ryan and pelosi, and others, saying you have to
fundamentally look at how you will treat the territories and come up with a plan that if -- that allows them to be on par and gain economic independence. will determine what puerto rico and commonwealth, statehood, and they will see what the 3 million americans are. one last thing i want to tell people is listen, the virgin islands, when we became members of the united states, leadership we want to do our responsibilities. islands, we virgin have a disproportionate share of individuals who fight for the country and yet we are not treated the same when we decide to live on these islands. ohio, independent line.
my question is, first of all, i am so happy that president trump got rid of comey. hillaryd podesta and are all pedophiles and they have the records of all of that. comey is a pedophile. the lady who called and said so true -- host: we will leave it there. tony from nebraska. my question is will comey be allowed to take any questions? guest: an individual can take the fifth unless the questions are related to the fifth amendment is invoked when they areeels that going to hurt their own criminal interests by testifying. takenot see that he would
the fifth. there is an ongoing investigation. he does not want to appear the investigation. that would be an unusual thing. and othere yourself journalists will have a field day with that one. host: i understand there will be a closed session as well and he will offer a lot more information, everything he wanted to? guest: the intelligence committee takes all classified information, so i think he could be very frank and honest with them in that closed session. i think he will measure some of the things he said with the ongoing investigation in the open session. host: from georgia, republican line, bert. to ask theanted lady, what is the difference between -- [inaudible] great question.
as a member of a territory as well as the district of columbia, representatives who represent those places can hold committees, committee assignments, leadership positions, but since the 1990's, we did not vote on the floor. that is the distinction. >> up until the time newt gingrich was in power we voted as a whole. after that, we do not. the distinction is that we have everything but the right of voting on the floor. we offer amendments and bills, cosponsors and all of that. pedro: what about the efforts to turn that over? >> it has made every congress. and since the republicans have been in the majority, they have not allowed it. i think there is a misnomer that individuals from the territories are all within the same parties. interestingly, that is not the case.
there are six members from all of the different territories including the district of columbia. two are republican and four are democrats. that has fluctuated but in each one of those territories, each of the highest offices that send representative to congress as well as the governors, they each represent different parties. usually athat we are group is not the case. pedro: democrats line from georgia, good morning. caller: good morning. pedro: you are on. caller: good morning. and so, yes, my comment is basically that i don't trust former fbi director comey. discouraged by the way he flip-flopped back and forth between hillary and trump
and democrats and republicans. really, his testimony tomorrow, whatever that is, i really have no confidence that this gentleman is being any more truthful than trump. i know he has just an ounce of truth in him. delegate plaskett: i think that that is for the members to be to givequestion him, people like your self-confidence and it is really an entire process we have to look at. we have a special investigator mueller as well as the senate and house intelligence committee as well as the over house -- oversight committee. i am hopeful that at the end of the day, that will ensure the american people that our democracy is sound. ,edro: delegate stacey plaskett joining us for this conversation, we thank you for this time. delegate plaskett: thank you for
having me. pedro: until our next guest. ,epublicans (202) 748-8001 democrats (202) 748-8000 and .ndependents (202) 748-8002 we will be right back. >> this sunday, q&a is in hyde park new york at the franklin d. roosevelt presidential library and museum where we go inside for a rare look at fdr's personal office and collection of artifacts with paul ferro, the museum director. of 1941.ned in june he was still president of the united states. this became the northern overall -- northern oval office. there were 22,000 books here. 914 books in this room alone. every book here was selected by fdr to be in this room. this is almost identical to the
way it was the day he died. nothing has changed. watch q&a from the franklin roosevelt library in hyde park, new york. c-span, where history unfolds daily. >> in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies. it is brought to you today by your cable or satellite provider. >> washington journal continues. pedro: also, if you want, it is open phones. contributed on our social media channels. to c-span-wjtweets and you can also post on our facebook page on facebook.com/c-span. we will tell you again, come thursday at